Apple releases macOS Monterey 12.4 to the public

Posted:
in macOS edited May 16
Apple has shipped macOS Monterey 12.4, with the latest update provided to the public containing minor fixes and performance improvements rather than feature changes.




Arriving after five beta cycles and just over a month of testing, macOS Monterey 12.4 is now downloadable by users to other Macs and MacBooks. Unlike the previous 12.3 update, version 12.4 seems to be less a feature-based refresh and more one primarily involving bug fixes and performance enhancements.

Few feature changes were discovered in the beta builds, save for an update for the Studio Display's webcam. Given that Apple is working towards the WWDC 2022 presentation and the expected reveal of the next major macOS update, it seems unlikely any updates before then will contain many visible changes.

The brief release notes for the update mentions a new setting for Apple Podcasts to limit episodes stored on a Mac, and to automatically delete older ones.

Communication safety changes include a setting for Messages that provides parents the option to "enable warnings for children when they receive or attempt to send photos that contain nudity." Safety warnings are also included in Messages to provide resources to children when they receive photos that contain nudity.

The update also includes support for Studio Display Firmware Update 15.5, which refines the camera tuning with improved noise reduction, contrast, and framing.

During the betas, Apple warned testers that if they wanted to use Universal Control, they would need to update their iPad to iPadOS 15.5 for it to continue working.

Mac users can download the 2.2GB macOS Monterey 12.4 update via the Software Update section within System Preferences, which can also be accessed by clicking on the Apple logo in the menu bar, selecting About This Mac, then Software Update.

Read on AppleInsider

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 10
    darkvaderdarkvader Posts: 889member
    Anybody else think 2.2GB for an update that doesn't really add any features seems a bit much?

    I mean, that's only slightly smaller than the entire current Xubuntu OS release, for what is ultimately a minor patch.  I've got clients who still have 12 megabit DSL connections, patches like this are a pain for them.
    williamlondontyler82Alex1Nmuthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 2 of 10
    jayweissjayweiss Posts: 17member
    The update on my M1 Mac mini is 3.11GB
    Alex1N
  • Reply 3 of 10
    fastasleepfastasleep Posts: 6,146member
    darkvader said:
    Anybody else think 2.2GB for an update that doesn't really add any features seems a bit much?

    I mean, that's only slightly smaller than the entire current Xubuntu OS release, for what is ultimately a minor patch.  I've got clients who still have 12 megabit DSL connections, patches like this are a pain for them.
    Lol no, and not sure why you think you know how big the update needs to be. “A pain”, really? Somehow I survived for years with 12Mb DSL just by waiting for things to download, turns out it requires precisely zero effort. 
    Alex1Nrezwits
  • Reply 4 of 10
    macxpressmacxpress Posts: 5,389member
    darkvader said:
    Anybody else think 2.2GB for an update that doesn't really add any features seems a bit much?

    I mean, that's only slightly smaller than the entire current Xubuntu OS release, for what is ultimately a minor patch.  I've got clients who still have 12 megabit DSL connections, patches like this are a pain for them.
    It's 2022...get out of 2003 with real internet. Even my dad who lives out in east jesus has 100mbps down and 20-30mbps up. 
    Alex1Nfastasleep
  • Reply 5 of 10
    mpantonempantone Posts: 1,903member
    darkvader said:
    Anybody else think 2.2GB for an update that doesn't really add any features seems a bit much?

    I mean, that's only slightly smaller than the entire current Xubuntu OS release, for what is ultimately a minor patch.  I've got clients who still have 12 megabit DSL connections, patches like this are a pain for them.
    I'm on a pokey DSL connection so I'm subject to the similar download speeds. A 2.2 GB update takes about 20 minutes to download for me. That said, the installation time is about the same so it's an hour where I go do something else (exercise, cook, garden, whatever). It's not like it happens every week.

    In fact, in recent years due to Apple's declining software QA, I don't upgrade to the newest OS when it comes out, I usually wait six months or so. That's right, I upgraded from Big Sur to Monterey last month (macOS 12.3.1). Same with iOS/iPadOS. In fact, my primary iPhone is still running iOS 14.8.1; I might upgrade it in a week or so. I went out of town on holiday in April so naturally I waited until after my return to update my Apple equipment's software.

    I skipped Crapalina completely.

    By delaying OS upgrades, I reduce the number of software downloads as well as enduring painful months of piss poor software. Sure, I miss out on a few features but Apple hasn't really delivered a "I must have this on Day 1" blockbuster for years.

    Right now, there are two iOS/iPadOS 15.5 ipsw blobs sitting in my Downloads folder. I might update Thursday or Friday if Q&A forum commenters (here and elsewhere) testify that this update is relatively benign. Since Apple tech media is reporting that this is primarily a bug fix release, I will probably install it.

    So that's one way to reduce traffic on your broadband connection.

    Even if I had some crazy fast fiber connection, I still wouldn't install Apple OS upgrades on Day 1.

    I did install today's macOS 12.4 update on my Mac mini 2018 -- mostly because I have a full Time Machine backup.

    For what it's worth, there are also Windows PCs in my house and I typically wait until the third or four week of the month to install their (Microsoft's) Patch Tuesday (issued on the second Tuesday of the month) updates. So I'm not specifically picking on Apple. Software engineering standards in general have really gone down in the past ten years.

    It is often better/less frustrating to run more stable older software than buggier cutting-edge crapware.

    Today I consider calendar year Q4 Apple software to be late alpha-early beta quality at best. Calendar year Q1 Apple software is late beta/release candidate quality. There is nothing that Apple is doing that convinces me that this software QA slide won't continue. At some point in the not too distant future, I will probably be a full year behind the current release.

    Hell, I'm not touching Windows 11 for another 18 months.
    edited May 16 muthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 6 of 10
    Fidonet127Fidonet127 Posts: 386member
    This update did add features and security. I’m not sure how one can judge if the size is worth it, by number of features as security updates don’t add features and yet can be large size wise. That said, I do wish they would be smaller for cellular and slow connections. Mainly I wish they were smaller for those with capped connection. I had to go through and update my parents cable connection and WiFi. Their connection was capped at 500mb per month as part of low income package. That is one area I wish isp’s would be forced to drop in the US for wired connections. 
  • Reply 7 of 10
    killroykillroy Posts: 217member
    Take a look at the install logs. You will see that it downloads additional files as needed. So not all of is in the first download file.
  • Reply 8 of 10
    Here is a good explainer of how updates have changed in macOS and what is happening:
    https://eclecticlight.co/2022/03/19/explainer-macos-updaters/

    Howard Oakley has a lot of information on his blog posts and quite a few extremely useful MacAdmin tools. 

    You really cannot compare Linux / FreeBSD / Windows to macOS in regards to OS updates, it's radically different and goes well beyond simply updating files. Apple's security and chain of trust changes are considerable.
    killroy
  • Reply 9 of 10
    rezwitsrezwits Posts: 831member
    darkvader said:
    Anybody else think 2.2GB for an update that doesn't really add any features seems a bit much?

    I mean, that's only slightly smaller than the entire current Xubuntu OS release, for what is ultimately a minor patch.  I've got clients who still have 12 megabit DSL connections, patches like this are a pain for them.
    Just in case:  If your clients have say 5 machines at the same site they have to update, turn on Caching, on one of the machines.  This way you only download once for 5 machines.

    Hope this helps!
    fastasleep
  • Reply 10 of 10
    Rogue01Rogue01 Posts: 55member
    Here is one excellent new feature in Monterey 12.4, after feedback received at Apple, the ability to hide Apple Music once again in the Music app!  Apple removed that option in Monterey, forcing non-subscribers to see all the Apple Music features in the Music app.  Thankfully non-subscribers can hide Apple Music once again.  But the other dumb feature of Monterey is moving the ability to hide Music Profiles into the Screen Time setting.  Why should I have to turn on Screen Time in order to hide Music Profiles?
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